Taking Your Suggestions!

We strive to put out a wide variety of books here at Altus Press. But the underlying direction of our releases comes down to one thing: putting out the books we’d like to have on my own bookshelf, and that no one else has published in a thorough way. We’ve got tons of new books in the offing, but we’re always interested in hearing from you on what you want to see.

Are there any pulp/quasi-pulp collections that aren’t being done by other publishers that you’d like to see? If so, drop us a line at the “Contact Us” link above & tell us what you think. We’ve very interested in hearing from you.

Seekay is The Book Cave's Book of the Month for April!

April 13, 2010


April 13, 2010

44 Thoughts on Taking Your Suggestions!

  1. OOOHHH, do you really want to do that???

    For my, my interest is in the various “hero pulps”. Some have been reprinted, so do expect them to be done here. Others haven’t, or if they have been done, have been done years back, are hard to find, etc. Now, I like some other pulp works, but much of that has been done (or is being done) by others (interests are in science fiction, occult/weird menace- usually HPL and the like).

    So, in no particular order:

    * More of Johnston McCulley’s various hero/villian series, such as Crimson Clown, Black Star, Thunderbolt, Man in Purple, etc.

    * Dr Nicola

    * Moon Man (I know the Battered Silicion Dispatch Box did this in 2 volumes, but, wow, the cost…)

    * Green Ghost (ditto about BSDB)

    * Green Lama

    * Captain Satan (Adventure House has done the last four, but not the first)

    * Captain Zero (AH has done all three. I’ve heard there are 2 more unpublished one. If these exist and can be found, be nice to see a complete omnibus of all 5)

    * Doctor Satan (not all where reprinted. Many have been using this character, be nice to read the originals).

    * Dr Yen Sin (AH has done the last 2, but not the first)

    * Dusty Ayres (AH did the first 2 and no more. Are the backup stories worth doing? Or is this one better for Age of Aces to tackle. They’re doing Captain Combat)

    * Wu Fang (AH reprinted some, but not the first, and not the last. An 8th novel was announced, was it written?)

    * Octopus/Scorpion (Baen reprinted the first. Maybe do this as a ‘flip book’, with some articles explaining or trying to figure out what was going on with this series)

    * Masked Detective (is this worth reprinting)

    Of the hero pulps, I left out the Street & Smith ones, which Anthony Tollin has the rights to (not just the ones he’s doing now, but others like Bill Barnes, Wizard/Cash Gorman, Skipper, Norgil, etc).

    Girasol is reprinting the Spider in decent doubles. I don’t see a good reprint series for either Phantom Detective or Operator #5. I think Wildside is doing them, but I think they are overpriced at $15 a volume with only one book.

    There may be other interesting characters that were short lived or the like. I’ve heard of “Terrance X O’Leary”. I thought it was only a 3 issue series from Dell, but learned it had a much longer history of stories before and after that 3 issue run.

    I’d like to see further reprints of ‘new pulps’ such as came out under Tom Johnsons zines. There are probably more ‘lost race’ works out there I’m not that familiar with.

    I’d like to see works on pulp history as well. More of Rick Lai’s works. Or Will Murray’s. Prehaps look at some of the good articles published in various pulp fanzines and reprint them. Maybe more companion volumes on other characters.

    Hope that helps.

  2. Bring on a Phantom Detective omnibus collection!!!

    • I had the first five years of Phantom Detective pulps at one time. Some excellent stories there. A decade later and there was no comparison. Where are the reprints?

      • Good suggestion: those first few years are really the best of the entire run of the Phantom Detective series.

  3. Love to see Green Lama and Crimson Mask. Captain Zero is great and I pretty much agree with most of what the first respondent wrote. Mainly, keep up the great work!

  4. The Black Bat Omnibus is certainly on my most anticipated list and agree on Doctor Satan.

    It’d be great to see *affordable* collections of Jules De Grandin.

    Hey there Ron Shiflet, this is Daniel Alan Ross. Long time no type. It seems the gulfs of time get longer between correspondence. I hope you are well!

  5. i know you’ve said before that there are so many doc turner stories that it would be difficult to collect them all, but you could do a “best of” doc turner book, or something like that. i really love doc turner, lol:)

  6. I would agree with shonokin.

    While I love the various books that the Battered Silicion Dispatch Box is doing, they are ALL too expensive for me. There are several they’ve done I want: the Jules de Grandin, Moon Man, Green Ghost, many of their “Lost Treasures of the Pulps” and “Pocketbook Lost Treasures of the Pulps”, but the cost is just too high. This is a general problem I have with several publishers who pretty much only put out high cost, limited edition books (even the few who do ‘trade editions’, the cost is twice what I’d like), which really limits those of us who are more interested in READING the books then in collecting them.

  7. I bet just about everything asked for can be done by Altus Press, but one thing you have to consider is that a lot of the great suggestions being made are under control of copyright holders, and Altus Press would have to pay a fee to reprint them (any of the Popular titles), and that would raise the cost considerably. But like all of you, I would love to see Matt reprint everything mentioned, and I will gladly supply the material if I have it.

  8. Oh, I forgot to add one of my favorites to the list. How about the three novels of Doctor Thadeus C. Harker? I can supply the stories when Matt gets ready to reprint them.
    And you Phantom Detective fans, Robert Craig, et al, here is our Yahoo Groups, come join.

  9. Tom- Am aware of the copyright issues, which is why I didn’t bother to include the S&S stuff, as Anthony Tollin has the rights. But I figured since both he and Age of Aces has reprinted Popular stuff, there is a relationship there to make that available.

    Also, there are probably things out there I’m not aware of. While I’m a big Doc Savage fan, I had never heard of Jim Anthony until about a year or so ago. Now we have 2 volumes of new Jim Anthony stuff from Airship 27, Altus is starting to reprint his stories, etc.

    Other volumes Altus has done or will be doing I had never heard of: Red Finger, Seekay et al, Blond Adder, etc. So there may be undiscovered gems out there.

  10. I think the Popular copyright holder is more willing to work with publishers, so you’ll be seeing more of the Popular characters appearing, but I’m sure there will be a fee required. The Doc Harker stories I recommended are under Popular’s copyright, but I’m sure Altus Press would be able to get permission. And I think the volume would sell well. I’ve got an idea Captain Satan might be harder to negotiate, though. So a lot would depend on what the copyright holder wants for release of the character for the project. But Matt has negotiated with the holder in the past, and knows how to deal with him. But when a fee is required, it means the books are going to cost more, I would imagine. Sigh.

  11. Well, AH did (some time back) reprints of some Captain Satan. Plus Millenium tried a Captain Satan comic, so I would think it would be do-able.

  12. Doable, yes, and I would love to see a Captain Satan volume. I’m just guessing at this, but I’ll bet the fee for Captain Satan would be higher than say Red Finger or some of the other characters from the back pages. But again, I’m merely guessing at all of this. I’m all for these reprints, and I think we will see most of them coming out before long. Girasol is already reprinting The Spider and Operator #5, as well as many other pulps. Altus Press and AH is reprinting some great pulps, and I’m sure there are some other publishers involved. This is a good time to be a pulp fan!

  13. Adventure House is doing The Phantom Detective.
    You can now get 6 issue subscriptions.
    Girasol is doing Wu Fang.
    All seven should be out by years end.

  14. Girasol also did Dr. Yen Sin, The Octopus, and The Scorpion. Checkout my website for listings of pulp reprints.

  15. Bill- what AH & Girasol are doing are pulp replicas, which I personally don’t care for, and don’t what to pay out $14-35 for a single issue reprint, when I could get 2-6 pulp novels in a single volume, ala what Sanctum Books is doing with Doc, Shadow, et al or what Altus Press has been doing.

    For instance, AH did a pulp replica of ONE of the Black Hood pulps for $14. OR I could pay $19 for Altus Press’s reprint of ALL THREE Black Hood novels. Gee, which should I do? $14 for ONE or $19 for THREE????

    So I pass on those. Others may want them, and that’s fine. But I prefer what Altus (and some others) are doing.

  16. I agree with Michael, although I do pick up both. It’s hard shelling out $35.00 for a replacement copy of Operator #5 from Girasol, but I’ll do it if that’s my only choice. I’ve also bought quite a few Phantom Detectives from AH to replace paperbacks or poor copies. But I would love to see Matt publish complete volumes of all the great old pulp series in affordable editions. We might have to pay more for some of the titles, but they would be worth it. Anthony Tollin is doing a fantastic job with his reprints, even at $15.00, two novels per book is cheap.

    There are some good choices listed so far, and I hope Altus Press will eventually do them. As already mentioned, I’ll gladly supply anything I have in my collection that he needs.

  17. I prefer the reprints to replicas myself. On my short list of characters I’d like to see collected by Altus would be Dr Satan, Captain Satan, Dr Yen Sin, The Mysterious Wu Fang, The Octopus/The Scorpion, and the Jules de Grandin stories from Weird Tales. A little more effort would certainly be involved since they would need to be translated, but English editions of Sun Koh from the German pulps of the 1930’s would be awesome. I think the Nazi Doc Savage would sell pretty good just for the sheer novelty and rarity of such a thing.

  18. On a different track, one thing I find a little annoying is the publishers out there who are focused on putting out NEW stories of old pulp characters (ex: Airship 27, Moonstone, etc), yet some of the characters they are doing AREN’T readily available to read.

    For me, before I read new stories of a classic character, I want to read some of the originals. Airship 27 put out a Jim Anthony collection, when at the time the only readily available reprints were a handful of stories scattered over stuff from 3 publishers. Altus only put out their first collection after this. Now, Moonstone is putting new collections for characters like Black Bat, Green Ghost, Avenger, Spider, Moon Man, Phantom Detective, Secret Agent X, Skull Killer (hero from Octopus/Spider) and other. And I’ve seen other writer reuse old characters like Moon Man, Dr. Satan and others.

    But a lot of these characters haven’t really be reprinted, or haven’t been reprinted in easily accessible editions. You’d think that if you want these new collections to work, that you’d want more people familiar with the originals, so you’d want reprints of the originals.

  19. I looked at the list Moonstone has up, but wonder how soon it will be that we’ll see half of it. There’s still time for publishers like Altus Press to release plenty of volumes of the original stories. Moonstone will very likely concentrate on their most popular and best selling series before venturing into the unknown. But I could be surprised. I hope we see a ton of this stuff coming out this year, just to spark interest in new readers.

  20. MBrown: I also would prefer to see reprint collections instead of pulp replicas too, but I fear that I will not see everything I would like to see reprinted before my time here is over. Hence I pickup as many replicas as I can.

  21. Tom: Moonstone is snatching up all the pulp heroes because the lost the Phantom license to Dynamite. They solicited their last Phantom titles in March, although we will still be seeing Phantom titles come out for months yet. They are hoping to strike gold with the pulp characters. So far, their plans for The Black Bat don’t sound good as they are changing the character. I have high hopes for the Spider and Ki-Gor series by Martin Powell. Howard Hopkins Spider has been good.

  22. I wouldn’t mind reading some Frank Merriwell stories.

  23. I forgot to mention “The Black Magician” by R.T.M. Scott, a Secret Service Smith story in 1929 that had a lot of influence on the future hero pulps. Some of the background plot from the story appeared in a couple Secret Agent X tales, plus Fleming-Roberts used the title on one of his Green Ghost tales. This novel might look good in a pulp format

  24. After mentioning the R.T.M. Scott book, it reminded me of that last Spider novel that has never been published in pulp format. Bob Weinberg published it in paperback as “Blue Steel”, removing all reference to The Spider back in the 1970s or ’80s. I think it is available online as it was originally written. But Spider collectors would love to have this one in pulp format finally!

  25. =Enough= of the hero pulps.
    At least look to some of the series characters, Thubway Tham perhaps.

    How about a collection of stories with a theme; a collection of stories about firefighting, railroading, logging, dozens of exciting occupation based stories.

  26. Hi Richard-

    This summer, I’ve got two books coming out this summer totaling 1300 pages of g-men and detective stories… no traditional heroes at all in ’em!

  27. Maybe someone could start reprinting the whole Secret Service Smith series. I’ve heard about it, but don’t know much about it.

    I have the “Blue Steel” paperback. It looked like they used an unused “Operator #5” cover by George Gross on it. Didn’t know Weinberg was involved with it.

  28. I’m wondering how hard it would be to find all the Thubway Tham stories. I believe there were about thirty. I think I have two from the 1920s, plus one in MSMM, and maybe a couple in Black Book Detective. Not many, for sure. Finding collectors who would let you copy from their 1918 magazines might be a problem. But you’re right, it would be a fun series to have.

  29. I’d love to see the entire Grey Maiden series collected (the first left the first story out), as well as what hasn’t been reprinted by Arthur Friel. Jules de Grandin in an affordable set would be nice as well.


  30. I agree with the Green Lama and Dusty Ayres fairly lengthy series that have been ignored except a few stories by Adventure House.

    Some suggestions for detective characters instead of masked heroes.

    Satan Hall and Ed Jenkins from Detective Fiction Weekly.
    Red Lacey from Popular Detective.
    Dr. Zeng.

    The Dalmas stories by Raymond Chandler (might be tough)same with Flashgun Casey.
    Captain John Murdock, The Marquis of Broadway and a complete collection of the Suicide Squad would be nice.

    If you could get the rights for any Street and Smith characters I would vote for Sheridan Doome.

    Whatever you do keep up the great work and please include the interior line drawings with all your reprints.

  31. Jerry
    With apologies to Matt for this plug, Age of Aces reprinted two Sheridan Doome novels that Steve Fisher wrote in the late 30’s. The book is a double novel titled “Murder of the Admiral/Murder of the Pigboat Skipper”.
    The interesting thing about these two stories is that they were written after Fisher’s marriage to editor Edith Seims. She was a huge fan of traditional mystery novels, and her fingerprints are all over “Murder of the Admiral”. While it is a great story that introduces Doome and his assistant, it has the feel of a traditional who-dunnit. In “Murder of the Pigboat Skipper” Fisher gets back to his hard boiled style of writing.

  32. So, I’ve been reading some of Daly’s Race Williams and actually find it to be a cut of truly classic pulpiness. It’s simple terseness might make Hammett seem like Hemingway, but it’s darn entertaining. It brings to my attention that there was possibly just one collection of only 5 Race Williams shorts published in the 80s. So I would nominate this character (there’s around 60+ stories?) for a collection or omnibus treatment.

  33. I’ll keep this short and sweet, as everything I could ever want was already covered by MBrown in his comprehensive first post. First of all, thanks for asking! It’s good to know you value the buying public’s input.

    In order of most wanted:

    1) The Moon Man (Battered Silicon Dispatch’s collection was WAY too expensive for me, and by the time I found out about it, already sold out)

    2) Doctor Satan from WEIRD TALES

    3) Dusty Ayres & His Battle Birds

    4) Terence X. O’Leary’s War Birds (the magazine, not the earlier short stories)

    5) The Octopus/The Scorpion (done as a flip book using the original covers, and hopefully including an insightful article on the genesis of these characters – again, the pulp replicas are too expensive for me)

    6) The Green Ghost (the Ned Pines version that started out simply as The Ghost)

    7) The Green Lama (Adventure House has already made a good start in reprinting these in its HIGH ADVENTURE magazine, but they seem to have stopped short of completing the run)

    If you do reprint any of these I’ll be eternally grateful!!!

  34. I would also comment that considering the Moonstone is starting to put out ORIGINAL stories of many classic pulp heroes (both public domain and from Popular), I would think this would increase the interest in the original stories, especially if you add in the new stories of these characters from other publishers like Airship 27, Wildcat Books, etc.

  35. Oh yeah, just thought of another one. I’d love to see the complete series of John Russell Fearn’s GOLDEN AMAZON reprinted. You could start with a single volume reprinting the 4 novelettes from FANTASTIC ADVENTURES, as the character was somewhat different in this early incarnation. A later version of the character, which was serialized in The Toronto Star Weekly, generated an additional 24 novels.

    The earlier version of the character predated Wonder Woman, and was one of the few female superheroes (along with Domino Lady) in the pulp magazines.

  36. I thought someone else was reprinting the Golden Amazon stories???

  37. Found it.

    Battered Silicion Dispatch Box is reprinting the Golden Amazon works in 3 volumes at $90 each.

  38. Also, found that Gyphon Books reprinted the entire Golden Amazon series in 20 paperbacks for about $16 each in late 90s/early 2000 that I think are still available from them. A bit pricy, I think…

  39. Thubway Tham- per the latest Coming Attractions, Wildside Press is doing a collection of him. Not sure if its intended to be the start of a complete reprint or not.

  40. Has anyone mentioned Emile Tepperman’s Suicide Squad and Masked Marksman series yet? Although these were both published by Popular Publications, I think they were Tepperman’s best writing. There were 23 Suicide Squad stories and 55 Ed Race (Masked Marksman) stories, though the Masked Marksman yarns were fairly short. Battered Silicon Press may have already reprinted some or all of the Suicide Squad, but their books are awfully expensive.

  41. i commend the publisher for the work being done. I would like to see every issue of Strange Detective
    Stories reprinted as well as many Hugh B Cave stories and the solitary issue of Thrilling Mysteries. Also Dime Mystery and Thrilling Mystery need to be reprinted. Maybe every issie ofweird Tales.
    Mary Magaldo

  42. I have already submitted a number of suggestions but that was a while ago and I have some that I hope are new. What about Race Williams? One of the earliest characters and one that was influential for many writers including Dashiell Hammett. As long as we are talking Black Mask characters what about Oliver Quade? Are the Clues characters like Violet McDade and Harlan Dyce available? I still think the Marquis of Broadway is overlooked and is there enough material to do a Flashgun Casey book? Thats all but plenty and I’ll bet you have some of them on the radar. Thank you for the most outstanding series of afforrdable pulp reprints ever.


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